Brian Windhorst says LeBron James usually ‘wears his team’ out in 4 years and causes ‘organizational fatigue’

Zach Stevens
3 Min Read

In recent weeks, there has been plenty of speculation about whether or not LeBron James will leave the Los Angeles Lakers, either via free agency next summer or even by being traded this offseason.

Brian Windhorst, who has covered James since his high school days in Akron, Ohio, had some harsh commentary while on ESPN’s “Get Up” about how the four-time MVP seems to end his stints with each team he plays for.

“LeBron’s career operates in four-year increments. He wears his team out. I call it organizational fatigue,” Windhorst said. “It happened the first time in Cleveland. They ran out of draft picks, they had a bunch of guys in their mid-30s. Shaq close to the finish line, Antawn Jamison.

“He goes to Miami, four years, great run, they run out of draft picks. In his last game, three guys retired after the game. He goes to Cleveland, four years, great run. They run out of draft picks. They got old guys. Here we are in L.A., fourth year. The oldest team we’ve seen in NBA history, they’re out of draft picks, they’re exhausted.”

The Lakers came into this season as one of the favorites to win the NBA championship after trading for triple-double king Russell Westbrook and signing James’ longtime friend Carmelo Anthony.

But due chiefly to multiple injuries to James and fellow superstar Anthony Davis, as well as key free agent signing Kendrick Nunn, L.A. is now on the verge of not even reaching the play-in tournament.

As a result, there has been increasing chatter that James’ days with the Purple and Gold could be numbered and that yet again he could be planning an exit strategy in order to seek greener pastures.

But according to Windhorst, Lakers fans need not worry about James hightailing it out of Southern California.

“I don’t think he wants to move. He wants to have his cake and eat it, too,” said Windhorst.

L.A. will have some tough decisions to make once its season ends. First and foremost, it needs to decide what to do with Westbrook, who will likely wear a different uniform next season.

Afterward, it will need to find a way to retain guard Malik Monk, who has been one of the team’s bright spots this year.

If the Lakers do that while managing to replenish the roster with young, capable two-way role players, perhaps James and the whole organization will look and feel revitalized in 2023.

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Zach has always had a profound love and respect for the Lakers that has inspired him to write about the franchise. He has a great deal of admiration for LeBron James, and his overall knowledge about the NBA has made him a solid addition to the Lakers Daily staff.